18:42 GMT +319 January 2018
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    Sigmar Gabriel im Bundestag

    German FM Defends SPD Party's Idea of European Super-State

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    With his proposal for deeper European integration, SPD leader Martin Schulz has big plans to transform the EU into a bloc with a common constitution. His initiative hasn't been met with excitement among the conservatives, but German foreign minister and member of Angela Merkel's CDU/CSU government Sigmar Gabriel has supported the move.

    German FM Siegmar Gabriel criticized the harsh reaction of his CDU/CSU colleagues toward SPD leader Martin Schulz's proposal to promote the idea of a so-called "United States of Europe," Tagesschau reported.

    Members of the conservative party on Saturday rejected the SPD chairman's idea of deeper integration within the EU, but Gabriel urged them to refrain from attacking someone who proposes new ideas.

    "Politics is often criticized for not having any visions," Gabriel said. "Now someone has an idea — namely, Martin Schulz — about how to move forward with Europe, but everyone falls upon him."

    According to Gabriel, Europe must become an institution "representing European citizens on the global level."

    In the "changing world," national states are incapable of withstanding global challenges on their own, he argued, adding that "if we do not stand together, then our children will have no voice" on the international stage.

    Schulz's move came amid a new round of grand coalition talks with Angela Merkel that may put an end to the political deadlock in the country.

    The transformation of the EU into a more deeply integrated bloc is supposed to take place by 2025.

    In his recent speech, the SPD leader stated that the concept of a national state has become outdated. The initiative, however, was criticized by his opponents as a move that might increase tensions in the European community.

    Related:

    Schulz' United States of Europe Condemned, but Could Impend Due to Brexit
    Germany's SPD Leader Schulz Calls for 'United States of Europe' by 2025
    Juncker Says EU Will Never Become United States of Europe
    Tags:
    united states of Europe, integration, EU, Siegmar Gabriel, Martin Schulz, Germany, Europe
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